ShamePosted: December 1, 2014
Shame is probably as big a part of my life as any other emotion I’ve experienced. But it is more than just a feeling–for me, it is a state of being. It’s always lurking beneath the surface, causing ripples and reminding me of its existence at the slightest provocation.
Last night I drank too much at games night at Papa Bear’s house. I got a little inappropriate and a little out of hand. Papa Bear and Wifey assure me that no one is mad at me and they had a lot of fun, but I feel awful. I lost control. I lost my ability to think clearly and I did not remain respectful of their space.
I drank too much because I am hurting and I want to numb it. This is certainly not the first time I’ve behaved like this. When I was talking to Papa Bear this morning, we talked about me drinking less. Obviously he is right–no one should have 8 drinks in a couple of hours, least of all me. I think if he helps me I will be able to monitor myself, but I couldn’t help wondering: If I am not drinking, and I’m not having risky sex…what will I do instead?
The question scared me, and I think it scared Papa Bear too. He knows I have been having a hard time lately, but I don’t think he knew how badly I feel the need to escape, or how deeply I am cut.
When I thought about it more, I realized something. I am not just depressed because of what is going on in my life. I’m depressed because I’m ashamed of who I am, and the things that I have done. I feel that I deserve whatever happens to me.
There are things I have never said to anyone out loud. Things I have only written here. Any time I make a mistake, be it professional, personal, or relational, everything bad I’ve ever done comes rushing back and threatens to consume me. I feel like I am drowning under a tidal wave of my own guilt and indiscretions. It has become clear to me how completely I loathe myself. Papa Bear says I need to forgive myself and move on.
But I can’t, because of the secrets. They are choking me, keeping me tied to the person I don’t want to be anymore, and I just want to be free. So. . .tomorrow, I am going to tell Papa Bear everything. All of it. He says he will not judge me or leave me, and I hope he’s right, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t afraid that he is going to walk out of that conversation thinking I am truly demented.
I will get his advice on whether there is anything I should confess to anyone else, or whether I should just work on forgiving myself and becoming a better person. But I know, there is no way I can move on and forgive myself if I don’t talk about this with someone. I know it is not going to fix everything, but it is step one.
Maybe after tomorrow I will have some idea of what should be step two.